The Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity (DCEO) offers Business Development Programs, Workforce Development Programs, Energy Programs, Recycling and Waste Reduction Programs and other programs to aid Illinois businesses. The following information is taken from the Programs and Services brochure published by DCEO. For more information about DCEO's programs and services, please visit their Web site at www.commerce.state.il.us.
Business Development Programs
Participation Loan Program
DCEO works with banks and other conventional lenders to provide financial assistance to small businesses that will employ Illinois workers. The state will participate in loans up to 25 percent of the total amount of a project, but not less than $10,000 nor more than $750,000. For information call (217) 782-3891 or (312) 814-2308.
Illinois EDGE (Economic Development for a Growing Economy)
EDGE provides tax credits to qualifying businesses that create new jobs and make capital investments in Illinois. Credits are calculated from the personal income tax collected on salaries paid to employees in the new jobs created, which may be taken as a non-refundable tax credit against corporate income taxes over a period not to exceed 10 taxable years. To qualify, firms must make an investment of at least $5 million in capital improvements and create a minimum of 25 new jobs, although demonstrated public benefit may result in waiver of these requirements. For information call (877) 221-4403.
Business Expansion, Retention and Location Assistance
Industry development specialists provide business development assistance to companies wishing to locate or expand in Illinois. For information call (877) 221-4403 (TDD: (800) 785-6055.
Illinois Small Business Development Center Network (ISBDCN)
Provides prospective and existing business owners with a variety of business resource programs. Centers are located throughout the state and include: Small Business Development Centers which provide businesses with management, marketing and financial counseling; Procurement Technical Assistance Centers which assist existing business owners in doing business with the federal, state and local governments; and Small Business Technology Resources Centers which provide counseling, training and technical assistance to technology-oriented entrepreneurs to enhance their opportunities to compete for federal research and development awards. For information call (800) 252-2923 TDD: (800) 785-6055.
DCEO can provide business listings or mailing labels for more than 450,000 Illinois business locations. The data may be supplied as hard copy or on disks or tapes. A fee is charged. For information call (217) 782-0527.
Manufacturing and Export Base Services Program
The purpose of this program is to establish statewide assistance to the state's manufacturing and services export base, serving the needs of small and medium-sized companies, providing better access to information, reducing impediments to the flow of technical information and providing Illinois manufacturers, producer firms and export services with better or more timely access to the state's and nation's technology base. Contact: (312) 814-5963.
Illinois Technology Enterprise Centers Program (ITECs)
A statewide network of centers to assist entrepreneurs, innovators and start-up firms in high-growth, high-technology sectors in furthering the technical or managerial skills of owners; aid ventures in locating financing, and help new companies with product development and marketing in support of new venture formation within the state. Contact: (312) 814-4849.
Workforce Development Programs
Industrial Training Program
Assists Illinois companies in training new workers and retraining/upgrading the skills of their existing workforce. ITP grants may be awarded to individual companies, as well as to intermediary organizations offering training to meet the common training needs of multiple companies. For information call (312) 814-2809 or (217) 785-6284.
Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Illinois
Through the manufacturing Extension Partnership of Illinois, DCEO provides access for manufacturers to information and technology expertise enabling them to modernize their operations and become more efficient. With manufacturing professionals operating out of regional offices throughout the state, services range from assessments of a firm's overall competitive position to projects employing advanced technologies and modern business practices to solve specific problems and enhance a firm's competitiveness. MEPI also funds projects to assist firms involved in environmental assessments or multi-company collaborative efforts. MEPI is jointly funded by DCEO, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, the U.S. Department of Commerce, City of Chicago and local institutions. For information call (312) 814-2366.
Job Training and Economic Development Demonstration Grant Program
Creates partnerships between community-based providers and employers to provide customized training to low-skilled, low-wage employees and newly hired disadvantaged people. Community-based organizations work with employers with less than 250 workers. Employers must participate in curriculum development, training primarily disadvantaged people, coordinate job retention, and provide follow-up support. For more information call (217) 785-6006.
Illinois Small Business Energy Assistance Program
DCEO provides energy conservation and energy efficiency information and technical assistance to Illinois businesses, with services including on-site walk-through energy surveys, small business energy educational seminars, and the "Motor Master" computer software program. For information call toll-free (877) 818-7127.
Industrial Energy Efficiency Demonstration Program.
DCEO promotes energy efficiency in Illinois industries and businesses. DCEO has conducted surveys of the Illinois plastics, die casting, metal fasteners, and food and kindred products industries, focused on their energy use and potential for cost-effective energy efficiency investments. The demonstration projects have resulted in comprehensive educational programs for the selected industries and will be used to develop industry-wide energy use guidelines. Other leading Illinois energy groups are targeted for future projects. For information call toll-free (877) 818-7127.
Recycling and Waste Reduction Programs
Recycling Market Development Program
Provides grants to encourage private-sector investment in the manufacture, marketing and procurement/demonstration of products containing recycled materials. These funds may be used for capital equipment, certain marketing expenses, and to offset costs to procure and test recycled products. For information call (217) 785-5081.
Recycling Industry Modernization (RIM) Program
Provides grants to manufacturers to encourage modernization improvements in their operations. The program is designed to boost the competitiveness of Illinois manufacturing firms while diverting materials from the solid waste stream. RIM projects increase the use of recycled materials and expand solid waste source reduction activities. Grants of $30,000 are available for modernization assessments, with grants up to $100,000 available for modernization implementation projects. Grants require applicant investment. Manufacturers implementing modernization projects may use the funds for consultant and technical services, or for capital equipment needed as they review their operations, implement best practices and install advanced technologies. For information call (217) 785-2638.
The above information is taken from the Programs and Services brochure published by the Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity. For more information about DCEO's programs and services, please visit their Web site at www.commerce.state.il.us.